Mental Illnesses Are Not A Joke

There’s this debate going on (once again) about a morning news show in one of our local channels. This time around it’s about the fact that while talking about what someone suffering from bipolarity feels, the anchors were laughing and not taking the subject as seriously as it should have been handled. I’m not blaming them in the slightest.

I’m blaming our society as a whole. We always make fun of people with mental illnesses, it’s not funny, at all. In our regular language we use derogatory terms, talking about people with insanity, schizophrenia, bipolarity. We use these terms in a way that’s so light, as if these people didn’t exist in reality. As if they were some sort of myth. News flash; they’re not. They can be your brothers, sisters, uncles, relatives, neighbors, coworkers. They can be people you meet every day on the street, they can have limiting diseases, that prevents them from working, from being around people. If they suffer from schizophrenia, they can go into laughing fits for no reason, uncontrollable laughter that’ll leave people around them looking at them all funny, and finally brushing it off as « that person clearly has issues ». Yes they do, why don’t we talk about it? Why do we pretend like it always happens to others, others that we apparently don’t see, don’t know, never heard of.

There are people in our country that suffer, that have these illnesses, that generally don’t get the required treatments because they’re afraid to talk about it. They hear from early on in their life « don’t be crazy », « stop being paranoid », « behave », « why aren’t you acting like a normal person ». Little sentences here and there thrown at them, showing them that they have no right to say; I don’t feel fine. I’m not okay. I want you to help me. Not every parents shows compassion for a kid with issues, not every parent understands what it means to have issues.

This is why we need to treat these kind of subjects with extreme care; no we can’t laugh at everything, not everything is funny, not everything should be treated lightly, no it’s not because it’s a fun news program that we should laugh while talking about very serious mental diseases. As someone with a voice, we should use it to spread understanding, compassion, desire to help out. To say if you feel alone, know that you’re not, we’re here, we can help you.

Here’s a link to a list of 10 global mental health online communities, if you wanna read more about it and understand it better if you or someone you know suffer from such conditions :

10 Global Mental Health Online Communities

I just want you to know that in case you don’t feel okay, you are not alone, and if you ever feel the need to talk, I’m here to help out.

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